I am a 36 year old woman who may not live in "The Big City" but I like the little city I live in and there is a lot that goes on around here too! This is a place where anything can happen..or be written about!!!!

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Peace, Love, and now some more Understanding!

I know my posts/ interviews have to do with "My" City, but sometimes a woman needs to get out on the open road and that is what this woman did this past weekend! I went and celebrated the 41st Annual Yasgur Road Music Festival in Bethel NY! I made one music pilgrimage in the late 90's when I went to see Graceland (So Awesome...The Jungle Room was the best ;) ), and this past weekend (as you can see on the picture on the left) I placed my feet on the grass of Yasgur's Farm the original Site of The 1969 Woodstock Music Festival...if this pic was taken 41 years ago I would have been in the front row, and there would have been 499,999 other people with me...I think it was probably a little more peaceful when I was there, but then again maybe it wasn't ;).

The Music Festival I attended didn't take place at the "Woodstock" site, but just down the road on Yasgur Road in the woods...hippies/ and non hippies from all over took over for a weekend of free music , peace, and love, and this one I was alive for and attended!
The reason I was attending this event was "D" was asked to play there on Saturday night. So we got in the car and headed down to Bethel  for the weekend to see what all this hype was about .
Both D and I are huge fans of music, but I wouldn't describe either one of us as a hippie, so we had no idea what would be in store for us in Bethel!

We got there late Friday afternoon, and as we approached the town things were just different from back at home. Farm stands were on every corner instead of a starbucks. There were farms and land every which way, and definitely less houses and buildings, and definitely no malls just quaint little shops. We didn't even have cell phone reception...maybe we were back in 1969 without even knowing it. We pulled into our hotel which was straight out of the 1960's (I am still not sure if that was a good or bad thing ;) ) unloaded our luggage and change our clothes. "D" eyed my tie -dye t-shirt peaking out from my suitcase. I told him it was from L.A., a gift from my mom (now she is the queen hippie), and it had a guitar tie- dyed on it. In a moment I thought I would never see ,"D" put down his black T-shirt, and threw on my tie- dye, and out the door we went...hmmmmm I thought things were starting to getting a little "far out" ;)

Since I am still on a cane (recovering from my hip surgery) I didn't have to do a mile trek into the woods from the car (I got dropped off pretty much by the side of the stage), but on the way in I saw tents everywhere, people setting up stands to sell tie- dyed t -shirts, glow in the dark headbands, bouny balls, etc. A tractor driving around bringing people to different places, people walking without their shirts on (men only), people everywhere coming out of the woods, walking on the road, getting out of their cars. Even when we were driving down the road a 4 year old boy said to me through the window.."Peace out dude"..with the peace sign fingers and all! Where am I????   D set up our chairs next to our friends the J's (I will call them that for short) and we watched some very talented live music...FOR FREE!!! D also went to the "grill master" in the woods  (near the drum circle) and came back with some fresh corn on the cob, cherry tomatoes, and baked potatoes...all for FREE! So we sat,  laughed, listened, grooved, drank, and ate into the night!
Talk about people watching! There were people there from all walks of life. There was even someone who came here from Australia just for this event,( and we thought our 5 hour drive was a hike). There were the musicians, the lovers of music, the hippies, the druggies, the families, the curious, the neighbors and community, there were just people from all over.  This was the first time I have spent a large amount of time in the woods with a bunch of strangers (which some were highly intoxicated and not just on the music) and some actually down right frightened me at first. I am also technically "disabled" at the moment due to my surgery so navigating around strangers in the dark woods with a cane was "interesting". I have been to many concerts, bars, and places with lots of strangers, but this "group" had some of the strangest strangers ever, but never once did I feel unsafe, actually I felt the opposite. Unlike going to a local bar no one grabbed at me when they got drunk, there were no fights. Unlike the concerts I have been too everyone wanted to give me stuff for free; free food, free drinks, free pot if I wanted it (but I said no..just not my thing man)  It was just full of peole who wanted to listen to music and be peaceful. One guy asked me if I had an ashtray...he didn't want to liter the woods. I really loved all those crazy cats and chicks! So this is what peace feels like...its strange that I had to go to the woods in Bethel NY to find it, but it dose exist!

Night two: More of the same thing, but even more people!  D and one of the J's also grooved out that night. We also saw a Jimi Hendrix cover band and with Jimi grooving out in the background on a screen made out of a sheet , I am telling you, if you closed your eyes and listened.... I was transported back...I could see what my Dad saw at Woodstock 41 years ago...I was really truly getting it and it was "outta sight"!
My friend J who is an artist made these cool posters for the event, and I voluntereed to sell them, because A. I thought they were great, and that everyone should buy one (very cheap too... only $5) and..
                                                      B. It gave me a job at the festival since I wasn't allowed to sing on stage (which to me is totally crazy...I rock! ;) ), and it also gave me a chance to meet a lot of interesting people at the same time and truly take part in the festival! It's also how I got my official Woodstock nickname "Poster Girl" ;) (This is truly understood by The Miner, The Provider, and Cherry Tomato ;) )

I have heard about Woodstock all my life, I have seen the movie, heard my dad's stories, listen to the music, watch many clips about it, but just like when I first saw the Eiffel Tower, or the Colosseum..I didn't really get it until I saw it with my own eyes! This is what Peace and Love felt like. This is what life can be like if we were all a little less stressed out, and we all could" hang loose", and maybe just be a little kinder to one another. I am not saying that I dislike the life I have now and being in 2010, but there was something magical about being transported back to the 1960's for a weekend, and maybe if everyone got a chance to feel it, we would all be a lot more PEACEful!

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Made With Love !

I am a lip balm, lip gloss, and lipstick junkie! If you just look in my purse you will be guaranteed to find at least 7 lip products in there at all times....I take my lips seriously! One day "D" randomly gave me a gift, he said his friend made it, and in his hands was my first introduction to Wunder Budder. It " had me at hello" with it's pretty, bright, and inviting packaging. Since I first put it on my lips I have put all other lip products aside!! I am in love with Wunder Budder! My lips have never felt so good! I put it on by itself and I have soft lips all day, and when I use lip gloss I will put my Wunder Budder on first as I primer. Seriously I don't leave home with out it!  

From the Wunder Budder website: http://www.wunderbudder.com/
"Wunder Budder officially began in 2002 based around our Original salve. We wanted to create an all natural multi-purpose super soft ,super smooth ,super awesome salve, with a bright and cheery label that fit our personality better than the standard browns and greens. So, that's what we did. We've expanded since then to offer more skin care and aromatherapy products made entirely of natural ingredients, in environmentally responsible packaging."

Lisa Bernardo is the founder and creator of Wunder Budder.  Just like her product packaging she is pretty, bright and has an inviting persona that makes you feel at ease when talking with her. It definitely was an adventure for her to get to the point to where she is now. With stops in Ireland and New Mexico to learn and experience Holistic Healing and Herbal Medicine through school, educating herself, and experimentation to create the product that she sells today  in Salem, MA.

So here is the interview with the creator of my favorite beauty product and a most "Wunderful" person and friend! There is no need to really "Budder" you up for this interview though, the product and the woman behind the product truly speak for itself.....

S:.How did you come up with the name Wunder Budder?
L: I can't remember exactly!  I was originally just naming what is now called the Original salve.  The consistency is closer to body butter than a traditional salve, and I wanted a name that showed that.  I can't remember how the Wunder came in... wonderful butter?  My cousin Kristy may have had something to do with it, but it was so long ago, it's a little cloudy now.

S:What is your dream flavor of Lip Balm? Have you created it yet or are you still working on it?
L: I've made all my dream flavors!  Black licorice (Black), ginger (Ginger Binge), cinnamon, peppermint  (Firecracker), and Chai.  I loved Bonnie Bell Lip Smackers when I was younger.  They had the best flavors!  When I moved onto natural lip balms, I wanted to make flavors that I couldn't find in stores.  Wait, no, I still want to make a coffee/mocha lip balm.  I'll be working on that some time this winter, using a coffee bean infused oil and essential oils for flavoring.

S: MMMMM...coffee/mocha lip balm..just the name alone has hooked me in ...can I place a purchase in advance ;)

S: What is your most important beauty/skincare advice?
L: This is a hard one!  Skin is the largest organ in the human body.. it's our living protective shield, and like all living things, it's constantly working towards a state of balance where it's happiest and can work the best.  Keeping it clean and healthy is the most important thing, and it's easy to do that as long as a person doesn't over-do it.  I know that sounds very vague, but specifics really depend on the individual.

S.What would you like to see for the future of Wunder Budder? Any new items you will be introducing soon?
L: This is another hard one!  I have different dreams for short term and for long term, but basically I'd love to just see Wunder Budder grow organically, with word of mouth helping it grow.  I'd eventually love for people to be seeking it out nationwide, but for now I'd just love to be somewhere and see a stranger using it!  
 I just released a new salve, Garden Grease, formulated specifically for gardener's hands in mind, but like my other salves it's multi-purpose. I'm always working on improving my newer releases, and creating new products, but for the near future I'll be focusing on face masks and aromatherapy blends.  I'd love to see them out before the end of the year.

S: Since this blog focuses mainly on Salem..Why did you open up shop in Salem?
L: Mostly because I live here (!), but Salem is home now.  When I moved here 8 years ago, I was just planning on sticking around for a year or so, but I fell in love.....  with Salem and with who is now my husband (Mike!).  I've met so many amazing people since I've been here, and I love being able to get almost everything I need in town, most of the time on foot.  I love the buildings and the history, I love that it's a tourist town, but also has a great local community.  It's an ideal place to start a business.

S: I know why I love Wunder Budder, but why do you think people should be using it?
L: This is too hard, I don't think I can answer this!  I'm not a good salesperson, and it's difficult for me to talk about Wunder Budder in a way to try to get people to use it.  But, I think I'm good at making products that work well, so I'd really like them to speak for themselves.  I guess I think people should try it, because I love Wunder Budder so much!  I love everything that I make (and wouldn't release them if I didn't) and I use most things on a regular basis.  I add "love" to all my ingredients list because although it may sound corny, it's absolutely true!

S:You have done an AWESOME thing, you invented a product/products and now are selling them. What tips could you share with others who have dreams to doing something like this?
L:Stop thinking about it and just do it!  Thinking and planning are definitely good steps, but then you just need to stop thinking and take the leap without worrying about the consequences or else you might just think about it forever.  Jump in and figure it out as you go.  It's empowering to take a chance and follow your dreams, whatever they are, whatever they lead to, and whether or not they work out as you'd hoped.

S: You have done something so many people want to do, create something you feel passionate about and share it with others. How does that success make you feel?
L: I love life, I really do.  Almost every day, I have a renewed sense of how lucky I am.   I feel really lucky to have an impulsive side of me which allows me to make big changes in my life and kind of deal with the consequences later as they appear, but also lucky to have such amazing support from the people in my life.  It's been a lot of hard work, and probably always will be, but I love it and it makes me feel good about everything in my life, even the things outside of Wunder Budder.

****You can buy all Wunder Budder products online at www.wunderbudder.com and Lisa will ship to anywhere in the continental US.  Outside of the continental US, she can ship anything except liquids.  She recently added a studio pick-up option on the website, so anyone who's local to Salem can make an appointment with her to come pick up their purchases.  Also, if someone wants to pay by check or cash, they can make an appointment with her to come check out the studio, test products, and see what they like.  Lisa would love to be able to do this more often.. right now the appointment times are mainly on Wednesdays, but she can be flexible when her schedule allows it.  Basically, she is open to getting Wunder Budder to people whatever way is easiest for them! :)
All salves and inhalers are available at Front Street Cafe.  The Two Girls Shop on Washington Street also has Original and Paramedic salves, and lip balms.  Roost carries some WB Products too!

Wunder Budder natural skincare and aromatherapy, made with LOVE in Salem, MA.

(Stay Tuned for a Part 2 to this post..The Tour of Wunder Budder Studio or Made With Love Part 2 ) ;)
(Photos from the wunderbudder website)
(Photos of me by me)